HANOI: Vietnam is set to approve the use of Gilead Sciences's antiviral drug remdesivir for the treatment of patients who have contracted the coronavirus, state media reported on Tuesday (Aug 3).
The Southeast Asian country successfully contained COVID-19 for much of the pandemic, but has seen a spike in infections and hospitalisations since an outbreak which emerged in late April.
After receiving donated supplies of remdesivir, Vietnam has already been using the drug for COVID-19 treatment in some health facilities, the state-run VTC newspaper cited deputy health minister Nguyen Truong Son.
"The ministry is studying the inclusion of remdesivir in the treatment regimen and will approve the use of remdesivir in COVID-19 treatment soon," Son said.
Remdesivir has been approved for emergency use in severely-ill patients in countries such as the United States, India and South Korea, and has received full approval in Japan.
Vietnam is due to receive 500,000 remdesivir vials and is also considering approving favipiravir, a drug which has also been shown to be effective in countering COVID-19, the health ministry said in an earlier statement.